Sara Bolivar Wagers



Entering Class: 2016

University of Central Florida
Molecular Biology and Microbiology majors
B.S., 2014

Honors and Awards:

  • Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award for Predoctoral MD/PhD Fellows, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, 2021-2024

MSTP Student Governance:

  • Student Admissions and Recruitment Committee, 2018-2020

Advisor: Bruce Blazar, M.D.

Thesis Research:

Immunometabolism of regulatory T regs in acute Graft versus Host Disease.

Publications (pubmed)

Bolivar-Wagers S, Loschi ML, Jin S, Thangavelu G, Larson JH, McDonald-Hyman CS, Aguilar EA, Saha A, Koehn BH, Hefazi M, Osborn MJ, Jensen MC, Wagner JE, Pennell CA, Blazar BR. Murine CAR19 Tregs suppress acute graft-versus-host disease and maintain graft-versus-tumor responses. JCI Insight. 2022 Aug 2:e160674.

Thangavelu G, Andrejeva G, Bolivar-Wagers S, Jin S, Zaiken MC, Loschi M, Aguilar EG, Furlan SN, Brown CC, Lee YC, Hyman CM, Feser CJ, Panoskaltsis-Mortari A, Hippen KL, MacDonald KP, Murphy WJ, Maillard I, Hill GR, Munn DH, Zeiser R, Kean LS, Rathmell JC, Chi H, Noelle RJ, Blazar BR. Retinoic acid signaling acts as a rheostat to balance Treg function. Cell Mol Immunol. 2022 Jul;19(7):820-833.

Bolivar-Wagers S, Larson JH, Jin S, Blazar BR. Cytolytic CD4+ and CD8+ Regulatory T-Cells and Implications for Developing Immunotherapies to Combat Graft-Versus-Host Disease.
Front Immunol. 2022 Apr 12;13:864748. PMCID: PMC9040077

Hefazi M, Bolivar-Wagers S, Blazar BR. Regulatory T Cell Therapy of Graft-versus-Host Disease: Advances and Challenges. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Sep 7;22(18):9676. PMCID: PMC8469916

Hirai T, Ramos TL, Lin PY, Simonetta F, Su LL, Picton LK, Baker J, Lin JX, Li P, Seo K, Lohmeyer JK, Bolivar-Wagers S, Mavers M, Leonard WJ, Blazar BR, Garcia KC, Negrin RS. J Clin Invest. Selective expansion of regulatory T cells using an orthogonal IL-2/IL-2 receptor system facilitates transplantation tolerance. 2021 Apr 15;131(8):e139991. PMCID: PMC8059880

Hippen KL, Aguilar EG, Rhee SY, Bolivar-Wagers S, Blazar BR. Distinct Regulatory and Effector T Cell Metabolic Demands during Graft-Versus-Host Disease. Trends Immunol. 2020 Jan;41(1):77-91. Review. PMCID: PMC6934920

Work prior to the UMN MSTP:

Ghanem MH, Bolivar-Wagers S, Dey B, Hajduczki A, Vargas-Inchaustegui DA, Danielson DT, Bundoc V, Liu L, Berger EA. Bispecific chimeric antigen receptors targeting the CD4 binding site and high-mannose Glycans of gp120 optimized for anti-human immunodeficiency virus potency and breadth with minimal immunogenicity. Cytotherapy. 2018 Mar;20(3):407-419.

Guo J, Bolivar-Wagers S, Srinivas N, Holubar M, Maldonado Y. Immunodeficiency-related vaccine-derived poliovirus (iVDPV) cases: a systematic review and implications for polio eradication. Vaccine. 2015 Mar 3;33(10):1235-42. Review. PMCID: PMC5529169